Tuesday, October 25, 2011

the time of harvest.

Happy morn!

Tuesday is a perfectly neutral day. It's not miserable, it's not overly great -- it's right in between. I've decided this.

This week is my week to reach some goals. I have been working hard on my little side business shop (Posies by Cait -- check it out here), and my goal this week is $40. This goal was set by my husband, who very carefully calculated our bills for this coming month. All that to say, I am toootally the bread and butter, and am thoroughly enjoying it.

Oh -- wait. Make that $45. I forgot about that Starbucks he very sweetly brought me yesterday... :)

We have been loving the weather.

And the leaves.

I feel like I catch my breath every morning when I walk out, and there are leaves everywhere.

So, we had ourselves some fun a few days ago. I couldn't resist grabbing a handful, and crunching them up, or throwing them in the air.

I am finally starting to figure out my sewing machine. After much effort, and a lot of sweat and tears -- okay, I didn't actually cry, but there was a lot of sighing and furrowing of brows.

I made my first skirt on Sunday!! I was very proud of it, even though I knew full well that it was not turning out perfectly. But I suppose it would be silly to expect it to. I think it's uneven, the stitching is definitely not straight all the way across -- and it poofs out a lot. I think I started out with too much fabric on the sides, so it really whooshes around. And if I wear it at my waist with a shirt tucked in, it would be ill advised to bend over.

I chose this fabric because I love the little pink buds. It reminded me of the vintage-y look that I like so much, and I could picture a few things that would go great with it. I actually wore it to work (not the ensemble I have pictured) with brown tights, brown boots, and a pink ruffled shirt and brown cardigan. And I liked it!

I also was inspired by an etsy shop I came across, to have a go at fabric necklaces. I have some felt lying around from the boutonnieres I made for my friend's wedding, and some really cool pattern setting on my sewing machine. So this is what I came up with, and now that I've tried these patterns, I have so many new ideas for more!

What I really need is more time each day (especially if these skirt attempts keep costing me three hours a pop). I should just come to work at 5am, so I could get home at 1:30pm and craft all day. I shouldn't joke about that, I'm starting to yearn.

All in all, I want a whole studio to myself one day, and maybe even an in-home store for people to come and shop. We'll just have to build our little house right in the middle of main street.

In love, and until next time,


Sunday, October 16, 2011

the creative process.

Good evening!

I have had a superb weekend. I hope you all have, as well!

Mine has consisted of Mona Lisa Smile, five episodes of How I Met Your Mother, The Predator, and four episodes of Boy Meets World. Oh and sleeping in until 10! That was all on Saturday.

Today (Sunday) has been a little bit more active. We went to the early service at church, (we are loving our church more and more), and met Sarah, Josh and little baby Brooklyn for lunch at Dickey's. So now Dusty has gotten to meet the little princess, and was able to get his baby fix :)

It was an afternoon nap kind of day, so I definitely got a few hours in, and am enjoying some pajama-clad craft time with a latte in my hand. Our espresso machine is most treasured, as the weather turns cooler.

Dusty is enjoying his homework (well, he's doing it, anyway) and so I wanted to give you a tour of my in-the-middle-of-a-project craft space. It's gloriously messy, yet perfectly ordered according to what I am doing. It's the first time ever I've had a specific place for my craft stuff, all to myself. And I'm lovin it! I'm not gonna lie, someday, it would be awesome to have a craft studio. A whole room. Or maybe, half library, half craft studio.

Daydreaming aside, here in the present, my desk and chair were cheap and are simple, but perfect. We also found the little white wall cubes on sales at Target, and they've been great to add some depth to the wall space. It's small and cluttered, but I suppose that's how I like it best. :)


I don't think I'm ever not in the mood to craft. I sit down at this desk just about every day, and it never fails to put me in a better mood. It's relaxing, and I'm always so thrilled when something I have in my head comes out even better than I thought it would. It has been a really great outlet for me. I'm constantly learning more and more about what I want to make, and how I want my things to look. I hope I can continue to do this for a very long time.

The creative process is a time consuming one, but it's worth it. I even enjoy photographing my finished products, to post online. I think moving here has given me many gifts that I'm just now beginning to figure out. But having this time is priceless.

I hope you all are enjoying this lovely October. Wherever you are. We still have to decide what we're going to do for Halloween - we have decided to be a part of the Harvest Festival at our church, on Oct. 30th. So we're pretty excited about that! We've also decided that we are not going to be one of those couples that dresses up their cat. No, no. But I am going to bake some butterscotch oatmeal cookies for the auction at church. Look at me, all domesticated! :)

Love and miss you all,



Wednesday, October 12, 2011

birthday month.

Hi ya'll!

Ooooh, it's birthday month. Yes, yes! Be prepared for a hefty blog post.

I have always loved birthdays. Especially my own. I am so thrilled that I married such a fun man, who loves to hype up my birthday as much as I do!

My mom flew out last week, and then my in-laws flew out a few days later! It has been the most amazing week. To begin the week, mom and I traveled to North Carolina to meet up with some Georgian friends of ours on Sunday, which was a blast. We ate at a Cajun restaurant called Razoo's, stayed in a comfy hotel, and had such a wonderful time catching up and seeing Sarah's brand new bundle of joy, Brooklyn. Such precious memories. One of the blessings of being on the east coast for once!

The next few days were SO fun. My mom bought me a sewing machine for my birthday, and we ran around town buying fabric scraps, thread, and Fall decorations for my apartment. So far I have cut and re-hemmed a tablecloth that was too big for our table, and used the excess for a bench pillow, (our "bench" is actually a little shelf/side table that mom found at DAV Thrift, that holds my sewing supplies in it) and made an apron from some adorable remnant material! All with mom's help, of course. Our apartment now smells like Pumpkin and looks like it, too!

We have the best wreath in our entire apartment complex, and the best little pumpkin to greet us as we come home. I can't tell you enough how thrilling it has been to see the leaves turn. Each day it seems there are more trees joining in the red, yellow and orange parade.

The only regret I have for the week is that I had to work. But mom spoiled me, and the two of us had pumpkin spice lattes every day of her visit. It was so delightful. She brought Dusty and I lunch Monday and Tuesday, and we ate together outside in the beautiful weather! It was a nice break for Dusty, studying hard for midterms that week. The three of us went to Dickey's on Monday night, and Red Lobster on Tuesday night with the O'Callaghans, which was such a treat!

The day of my birthday dawned sunny and beautiful, although poor Dusty had his midterms to dread throughout the day. However, our celebration that evening shot us to brilliant, stress-free and obesitous happiness.

We had made reservations to The Crown for that evening. It has been quite a while since I have dined so finely. It is a local treasure of Lynchburg, we now know firsthand. Tasty and pricey, the food is exquisite.

Our appetizers included the salad bar, a delectable crab cake, buttery crab bisque served in a bread bowl, and the most delicious brie, served in a puffy pastry and drizzled in honey.

We were already in heaven, and our ribeye and filet mignon entrees hadn't even arrived yet. Mom and I's baked sweet potatoes were like a slice of pie, with the cinnamon honey butter they include on the side.

We were all so stuffed, the fullest we've ever been. Since it was my birthday, they brought a small platter of delicious treats. Some amazing macaroons, and the most awesome chocolate truffle things. They had GLITTER on them! It was the best!

They also gave me a free wine sauce parfait for dessert, complete with a single birthday candle. Mom got a lemon cake, and Dusty (of course) got the chocolate volcano dessert. The wine sauce parfait was SO delicious. I don't like wine, but this ice cream covered with sweet red wine sauce...I was so into it.

Even when mom knocked my spoon into my lap, dripping with the red sauce, I was still so into it. Then later, when she knocked the entire parfait into my lap, covering my dress in red wine sauce, I picked up the rest and was still, SO into it. Hahaha! I still can't stop laughing every time I think about it! It was just about the funniest thing that's ever happened to both of us, I'm sure of it. I thought they were going to come over and tell us giggling idiots that we were unfit for this nice of a restaurant. I was all but squealing in laughter. It must have been the wine sauce.

As his birthday gift to me, Dusty has prepared a whole trip for us -- which will be taking place in November! I cannot WAIT. We will be going to Connecticut for a couple nights, to see our friend Lauren, and to go into New York to see the Broadway show "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying". Starring Daniel Radcliffe!! We are both so excited, and it's going to be so fun to have something so awesome to look forward to for the first few days of Thanksgiving week!

Dusty's parents arrived the next day, and I made dinner for us all! I prepared my famous (or so I'd like to think) jalapeno cream cheese chicken. Dusty has been bragging on me, so his parents really wanted to try it. Unfortunately for us all, (especially my mom), the amount of jalapenos MIGHT have been a little overboard :) but it was still delicious, and we had a great time eating together. My first experience preparing a meal for more than just Dusty and I here in lynchburg, and with our new table bench, we could all sit around our little table together! It was a great night.

Mom was all set to leave the next evening, but as she spent the afternoon with me at work before Dusty came to pick us up for the airport, she got a call that her flight had been canceled! Needless to say, I was a pretty happy camper. We had another amazing night together, the five of us eating at the Hibachi grill (a huge buffet, basically a Golden Corral with an asian twist) and mom and I spending some sewing time together, which produced my first homemade apron! (Coming to a Posies by Cait shop near you). I'm so glad she got to stay.

We woke up bright and early Saturday morning to take mom to the airport, and said our farewells. I wish she was still here! The rest of us had a loooong day of history and touristy adventures :)

We went to Monticello, the home of Thomas Jefferson. It was a really cool experience. He was such an amazing man! Rhonda bought Dusty and I a magnet of Jefferson's 10 rules. :) it has already begun to reformulate my lifestyle! He was a brilliant man, and it was incredible to see his home, his gadgets, and the evidence of his life and contribution to our history.

We then went to Appomattox, to see where Lee and Grant came to terms for the end of the war. It's amazing to walk on the same ground as some of these historical figures. Despite the many hours of driving ( a few too many, even though Dusty said he was going a faster route... :) ) it was a wonderful day, and we saw some really amazing things! We were pooped by the end of it all. We ate that night at Shaker's, which was lovely, and got in our pj's at home and watched three episodes of Boy Meets World. :)

Sunday we went to the early service at our church, and were really excited to get to show Paul and Rhonda our church home. They really enjoyed it. Our church was hosting the Children of the World, from World Help. Children from Uganda, Nepal, and the Philippines who are apart of their sponsorship program, and tour the world by dancing and singing about Jesus. It was amazing.


We made tacos for lunch, and Rhonda helped me learn a little bit about my new pressure cooker, a birthday present from my dad! We made chicken for lunches this week. I can't believe how easy and amazing it is! I can't wait to start using it. I never thought I'd love cooking this much. And my sewing machine? Pretty much the most incredible machine I've ever owned. I think I'm going to be addicted. Oh, the possibilities!

And ALSO -- big news -- Rhonda and I went shopping at the mall here in Lynchburg. It was my FIRST TIME. That's right!! My FIRST shopping trip since moving to Virginia. It was wonderful. The mall is small, (only one story) but clean and charming, I suppose -- and has all the necessary stores. We hit up New York & Company and got some awesome deals on new work clothes for me, I was in dire need of some black slacks! I'm so excited about my new clothes :) I got the most killer black boots at a shoe outlet they have there...I'm in love. After the mall we also went down to Old Navy, where I got a few more amazing steals...including a dress for $4.18. That kinda bargain would make my mom proud! All in all, it was an afternoon that I had been craving. I hadn't realized how badly! It was some great girl time for Rhonda and I.

Dinner that night was a return to Dickey's. A favorite of ours -- always a great meal! We got back into our pj's at home, and watched Something Borrowed...a birthday gift from my friend Lauren :)

It's been such a wonderful week. Even though this next stretch will be even more difficult then the last, spanning the next 10 weeks, and including Thanksgiving, I know that it will be all the more wonderful to return home in December and enjoy our family -- and truly, our experiences here continue to be more and more precious. Virginia is for lovers, after all. Why? I'm not sure. But I think it's true.

In love,


P.S. Happy Fall to all :)